Felony marijuana possession


Felony Marijuana Possession Attorney 

Across the country, many states are choosing to decriminalize marijuana, making it legal for medical or even recreational use in small quantities. This change has given some people the false sense that marijuana is also legal in Georgia or at least not vigorously prosecuted. This is not the case, however. While some municipalities in the state have decided not to prosecute small quantities of marijuana, it’s illegal to possess any quantity of marijuana in Georgia, and it’s a felony to possess more than 1 ounce. 


At Ghanouni Teen & Young Adult Defense Firm, we understand the complexities of Georgia’s drug laws. We know that felony marijuana possession is an incredibly serious charge, one that may result in incarceration and steep fines. But because drug cases can also be challenging to prosecute, there are opportunities for a skilled felony marijuana defense attorney to reduce or even eliminate the charges. 


What is a felony marijuana possession in Georgia? 

While the U.S. Drug Enforcement Agency classifies marijuana as a Schedule I drug, Georgia treats it differently from other Schedule I substances. Under Georgia law, marijuana is not part of any drug schedule but is instead a “controlled substance.” (Learn more about the possession of illegal substances in Georgia.)


Felony possession brings a mandatory minimum sentence of one year and a maximum of 10 years. Individuals arrested within 1,000 feet of a school, playground, park or drug-free zone may face up to 20 years in prison and a $20,000 fine for their first offense. For their second possession offense, they may face 5-40 years in prison and fines of $40,000. 


If law enforcement finds signs of the individual’s intent to distribute, like the presence of cash, bags and scales, charges may be upgraded. Cultivating marijuana is also illegal in Georgia.  


Defenses for felony marijuana possession

Because marijuana possession convictions can have such serious consequences, a marijuana defense attorney must be familiar with every avenue of defense, as well as alternatives to prosecution. 


Prosecutors must prove that the individual possessed the controlled substance. This can mean actual possession, where the marijuana is found on the person, in their clothing or in a personal bag. It could also mean constructive possession, when drugs are found in a person’s home, in their dorm room, in their car or in their workspace.


A felony marijuana attorney might use any of the following defenses: 

  • You didn’t actually possess the drugs: If the police pulled over your friend and found marijuana under the seat you were sitting in, you may be able to prove that you didn’t possess the drugs. 
  • You didn’t know you possessed the drugs: If the police stopped you and found marijuana in a backpack you were returning to a friend, you might be able to argue that you didn’t know the drugs were there. 
  • You were treated unfairly by the police in some way: If you were pulled over without cause or searched without proper authority, the evidence might be inadmissible. 
  • The substance is not marijauna: Upon appropriate lab testing there isn’t sufficient THC in the plan to meet the legal definition of marijuana.


Skilled drug defense attorneys may also be able to work out a plea deal with prosecutors to reduce the felony possession charge to a misdemeanor, or seek other alternatives. First offenders sometimes also qualify for pretrial diversion programs, allowing them to avoid having a criminal record.  


Process for marijuana possession defense

If you’ve been charged with felony marijuana possession, it’s important to act quickly and get the legal help you need. Take the first four steps to protecting your future:


  1. Contact us to schedule a time to discuss your situation.
  2. Get clarity on your options by meeting with us. 
  3. Pick which option you want. 
  4. Execute the plan together with us.


Ghanouni Teen & Young Adult Defense Firm provides proactive representation that focuses on protecting young people’s future opportunities. Please call our office today at 770-720-6336 to arrange an initial consultation. 

If you aren’t ready to schedule your consultation, then click here to download our complimentary ebook, 5 Things Not to Do When You’ve Been Charged with a Crime, to learn what you need to know to start protecting your future immediately.

We are here to help

If you’re facing a criminal charge and are concerned about the impact on your life, contact us today and schedule a complimentary Defense Strategy Meeting.